Masar and her U.S. teammates had front-row seats for a Bayern Munich match.
Oct. 28, 2009
Illini alum Ella Masar was recently called up to the U.S. National Team and is periodically checking in from Germany as the U.S. prepares to play the Germans on Oct. 29. Read about her latest experiences below!
Difference from U23 to Full Team:
U23 - 2nd section of stadium watching Manchester United play (last year)
Full Team - FRONT row seats for Bayern Munich
Even though it's a couple days later, the Bayern Munich game was probably the coolest soccer atmosphere I have ever been in. We were not only in the front row but also almost at the halfway line of a 65,000 fan-packed men's professional game.
The "soccer" playing was not the best, however to see some of the best players in the world play is remarkable. To name some few:
Luca Toni - a ginormous 6-5, Italian striker who some could say led them to their last World Cup
Miroslav Klose - German National team starter last 8 years - Golden Boot winner for World Cup in 2006
Mario Gomez- up and coming German national team player
Bastian Schweinsteiger- the workhorse for the 2006 World Cup team
Phillipp Lahm - Starting outside back for Germany and considered one of the best backs in the world
Franck Ribery - French stud known as the "jewel of French football"
Arjen Robben - Holland international, helped them become a national team threat and has won numerous FIFA awards
The most amazing thing about these athletes is how effortlessly they make it all look. Whether they were dinging the ball around in warm-ups or striking the ball for a game-winning shot, they do it without breaking a sweat.
I also cannot believe how massive they are! I don't know if it's just the German league or what, but they definitely have to be putting something in the water. All of the guys, minus an outside mid, looked like they could be starting tight ends in the NFL!!!
After the game was over, we headed home and started to talk about the U17 (no not boys here) Bayern men's feeder team we were playing the next day. I am still not sure what our coaches were thinking with playing them but it pretty much reaches the equivalence of the women's national basketball team playing the best U17 boys bball team in America. You know, like five Lebron James'.
Sure enough we were right, 9-1 was the final and not in our favor. The good news was it was under double digits. The bad news is I do not remember the last time I got that kind of whooping.We definitely got smoked but it was still a lot of fun playing. When we play the teenage boys in the U.S., we know they are just going to kick and run and we can't keep up with them speed-wise.Here, we still can't keep up with them, but at least they actually play which allows us to actually learn well we get destroyed ;)
After our game we packed our bags and headed off to Augsburg which is a about an hour west of Munich. This is our final destination and where we will be playing in our big game on Thursday.
Trainings have been filled with a lot of the same things as before. I have been doing okay, trying to soak in as much information as I can but still bring what I know I have to the table. I wish it were as easy to do as to write. ;)
Overall I still feel I am doing pretty well, I definitely can see where I need to improve but also know I belong. To be able to watch them in prime form pinging the balls around, passing and moving is something I will always love to be a part of.
With the game only 48 hours away and having doubles today, things should hopefully be getting a bit easier from here on out.
Wish us Good Luck folks, playing in front of 30,000 screaming German fans is not always easy ...